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Up, down, turn around

CIA is not feeling well. Whilst we were in Zürich, she was on a blog vacation, and that explains why you’ve got so much PJD, and so little CIA. She planned to write a post tonight, but since she can’t, we developed a mini writing challenge. She picked out this picture from her cellphone, and I have had ten minutes to think about what I would write in response. I then have 20 minutes to write that response.

Here’s the picture:

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And here’s the response:

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That’s my favourite bit…what’s yours?

Sometimes on the train, I really just need some light entertainment. Lately, I have been playing FIFA 12. On my phone, it’s not always the smoothest game to play, but I really enjoy it. And besides, everyone is allowed a secret (or less secret) vice, right? Aren’t they?

On the way home today though, my phone battery couldn’t last the distance. I was instead listening to my portable MP3 player. Suddenly, out of nowhere I heard something familiar:

I first heard this song when a friend of mine sent me a link:

There’s more… I’m sure.  You know Crystal Castles, right?
w/ Robert Smith – Not in Love
Without Robert Smith – Celestica

For any of you who are also FIFA Soccer 12 (as it is also known, to Americans) players, secret or otherwise, you will recognise the song. It’s part of the title music in the game.

But they use the Robert Smith version.

Which is, frankly, and in spite of my past Cure fandom (another vice, how did this post end up so revealing?!), inferior*.

So, as I listened to the version in the YouTube video above, I was wondering what it is about one almost identical version that made it so much better than the other? I sensed that the non-Smith version was a little faster-paced; a little more relentless; a lot more compelling. The indistinct and heavily modified vocal adds a hefty dose of creepy. The “waa, waa” at 2:07 epitomises this feeling for me. The change of melody at 2:35 also draws me into the song, but then comes the best bit, my favourite bit, at 2:49 as layer after layer has accumulated to a delightful, synthesised overdose of musical goodness. I hope I get to catch Crystal Castles live somewhere sometime…I can completely envisage going crazy for this song in particular.

And that leads me to this last segue: what is it about certain songs that have certain moments that sucker-punch that gets you every time? (Think perhaps, of the gravelly baritone that opens up The National’s Fake Empire; or maybe when Cut/Copy’s Pharaoh’s & Pyramids shifts from odd funky number into dance floor killer, at 3:40). What is it about these kinds of moments that leads CIA to yell out “That’s MY FAVOURITE BIT”? And that make me to grin quietly on a train, as the person sitting across from me wonders what on earth is making me smile so much?

What other moments in other songs are there, that catch you out every time?

PJD

There is no photo to credit, for once. But I am in the habit of attribution now, so thanks, instasquid, for the links that led me here.

*I apologise for complex sentence structure, and will take this chance to express gratitude to those who keep reading regardless; this applies to all posts previous, and all posts future.

You know that thing we said about the shoes?

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We weren’t kidding.

PJD

Photo by CIA or PJD (it was definitely on PJD’s phone), after Zürich Openair

Another Zürich Openair panorama: with mud

We had such a great time on the third night – Bloc Party (more on whom, later) blew us away; a soggy Mogwai had to finish early for safety reasons, which was very sad, but they delivered a set of ferocious intensity, before which, we tried to capture a sense of the muddy chaos produced by the torrential rain of the night before.

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Nevertheless, Zurich Openair is a place of beauty, fun and adventure. Just don’t wear new shoes.

PJD

Photos by PJD, Samstag, Zurich Openair, 2012. Just wait until you get to see our shoes.

Where else would you go but to…

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Chur, bro.

PJD

Photo by CIA, in Zürich Hbf

Weekly Photo Challenge: Urban

This week we’ve taken a straight-up approach to the challenge. Though one may argue if New York City still epitomises the urban, there is no doubt that in the early 20th century when the skyscraper was new, NYC was unquestionably the queen of all things urban. Some may favour the taller Empire State, but from this view (taken from outside the New York Public Library), we have no doubt at all that the best of all New York buildings is the Chrysler building. Its imperious spire, the Art Deco detailing, it really is a thing of urban beauty; all the more so with the gorgeous tree in front.

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PJD

Photo by CIA, alone in New York, April 2012.

Zürich Openair – Panorama

Tonight we found our new favourite band (of right now), Soulwax. Sometime between Soulwax and White Lies, we took this Openair panorama. At this point, it was a beautiful evening, later the skies opened up, but enjoy!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

PJD

Photos by PJD, grateful that, for this first time in his adult life, he had a proper raincoat. For those who pay attention to these things, it’s the “warm vintage” setting on the HTC Desire S. Looks like instagram, I guess?

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